San Francisco is, in its way, the sieve atop life's drain. Every manner of desperate person seems to come through here while their life swirls downward; the city is, all too often, a way station for oblivion.
And so, the news broke this week that Bad Elmo is, once again, roaming our streets
and annoying our denizens. Dan "Adam" Sandler
is a puzzling man who dons a red, fuzzy outfit and fulminates against the Jews. His resume includes running a porn site in Cambodia titled "Welcome to the Rape Camp" that led to his deportation from that nation. Later he was found guilty of attempting to extort $2 million from the Girl Scouts.
And yet, here he is, back in our fair city and fund-raising, so to speak.
Perhaps they come here -- and not burgs like Grand Rapids, Mich. -- because we're so much more welcoming. After all, that Midwestern town only this month rescinded a 38-year-old law
stating "no person shall willfully annoy another person."
A law on the books like that would have reduced San Francisco to a penal colony.
It's hard to know where to start when tabulating who'd be headed for the lockup. Here's a brief and very incomplete list:
Protesters banging pots and pans outside your building; any and all bushmen
; 85 percent of the people speaking during Board of Supervisors public comment; 85 percent of the Board of Supervisors; alarming numbers of 14-Mission riders; karaoke aficionados; public relations professionals; inveterate tweeters; inveterate tweakers, nudists, and vast swaths of the Marina.
The city official responsible for incarcerating this segment of humanity would be Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi -- who, most certainly, never annoyed anyone.
Bad Elmo, it seems, is the price of tolerance.